Saturday Sun 04.27.2024

Created by Laura Wright
A head-on shot shows a café au lait in a wide mug resting on the arm of a couch.

Hello and welcome to the weekend! The weather is supposed to be warm and properly springy this weekend, so hopefully we’ll be spending most of it outside. I treated myself to a new cultivator this week and I’m very excited to use it haha. I’m also really looking forward to some grilling time and continuing the hunt for outdoor furniture.

In terms of work things, I have another dill pickle themed recipe coming your way that I am filled with excitement over. It’s super summery and just the most incredible way to eat a ton of vegetables. I’m also working on a one-pot asparagus pasta and a lemon blueberry version of my XL grain-free tahini cookie.

I’ve also got a gorgeously green, tangy, and herby chickpea salad that I’ll be sharing in Liz of Birdhouse Bakeshop’s newsletter! We’re doing a newsletter recipe exchange in celebration of warmer spring days. Next weekend, my email subscribers will receive her vegan Earl Grey Olive Oil Cake with Blueberry Lavender Compote & Coconut Whipped Cream (scroll to see the gorgeous photos)! Do make sure you’re subscribed to both of our newsletters if you want to receive these incredible recipes in your inbox.

And one more housekeeping item! Sara from Sprouted Kitchen and I are doing a Zoom cook along to celebrate the release of her new cookbook Around Our Table (we’re making the sesame cucumber crunch salad with some extra goodies to plus it up). Anyone that preorders the book can join in! All the information for the book is here and the Zoom cook along info is here.

Be well and take care out there!

5 Things I’m Reading:

  1. The unexpected joy of the Squirrel Census
  2. Why walking backwards can be good for your health and brain (Thank you Debbie!)
  3. How Do We Know What Animals Are Really Feeling?
  4. The experts: librarians on 20 easy, enjoyable ways to read more brilliant books
  5. How to Be a Genuinely Good Listener
An overhead shot shows the cookbook cover of "Plant Magic" by Desiree Nielsen.

5 Things I’m Enjoying:

  1. The only ASMR content that I like: dog eating crunchy veg + puppies snoring
  2. Home, Grown: The future of building is waste
  3. I feel like I link Rich Roll’s podcast every other week lol, buuut: Dr. Lisa Mosconi on Menopause, Hormone Health & Alzheimer’s Prevention
  4. Following @akiandkoichi. Love their outfits and sweet dog in almost every post. Also following @moxtheboat and their adorable boat kitty.
  5. Desiree Nielsen’s brand new cookbook Plant Magic! Making the blackberry basil smoothie to fuel our gardening efforts this weekend.

5 Questions:

  1. How to incorporate more beans and legumes into my meals without getting super bloated and gassy?
    I have been asked this one so many times! I am not a dietician or doctor, so can only discuss from my own personal experience. My pal Desiree Nielsen is a registered dietician and cookbook author (see above), and has a great blog post about minimizing bloating and gas on a plant-based diet with some specific pointers for beans as well. The common tips like soaking your dried beans for 12 hours (yes cooking them yourself), adding kombu seaweed and spices like ginger or fennel to the cooking water, and eating smaller amounts at more consistent intervals have all been effective in my experience.
  2. Do you use a fitness watch? Looking to track my steps better.
    Yes I have an older Apple watch and I love it! It provides a lot of interesting information about recovery heart rate and other stats as well. If I was getting a wearable now, I’d still be on board with the apple watch (I never ever miss phone calls because of it), but the Oura ring also looks very cool.
  3. What’s your favourite quick treat lately?
    I still love a pitted date stuffed with almond butter, one pecan half, and then dipped in melted chocolate with a sprinkle of sea salt (pop it all int he firdge for about 10 minutes). So, so good! It gives me a Turtles candy vibe. For a healthier treat, lately I’m really into almond/peanut butter on a cinnamon rice cake topped with blueberries and a teeny drizzle of maple syrup.
  4. Where do you get your herbs and spices from?
    I love Diaspora Co. spices, NY Shuk, Kanel, and Burlap & Barrel. Also Salt Spring Sea Salt makes lovely infused salts for finishing dishes. Sometimes all you need is an amazing spice or spice blend to help you fall in love with cooking/eating vegetables again!
  5. What are you inspired by lately?
    Truly just the beautiful spring weather and also seeing green and flowers everywhere! In terms of food, I’m dreaming of grilling and crunchy flavourful salads for the warm months coming up as well as the start of farmer’s market season here. I’ve also been dedicating time over the last year or so to reading Buddhist teachings, which has enriched my day to day life so much. And movement of all kinds! Yoga, walking, running, pilates, stretching… I find so much inspiration in the midst of those activities.


  • Allie

    Thank you for the article about books, which led me to new-to-me book website– wow!!
    Also, for your reader asking about beans and gas, I’ve found that pressure-cooking the beans helps make them more digestible.

  • elaine

    Laura….where can you buy farro? I’ve looked for it everywhere……..

  • elaine

    Hi Laura…….just love your newsletter. Packed full of wonderful recipes and great info about other sites to follow. I have a copy of your cookbook and use it all the time. You are so very interesting…….so I am interested in learning what new things you find interesting as well. Would love to see you do another cooking session with the WPL. Keep the info/recipes coming!

  • Elizabeth

    Really excited to listen to the Rich Roll podcast you linked to! I’ve gone through premature menopause over the last 2 years as a result of cancer treatment. I’ve been shocked at how impactful it is on a woman’s life and yet there is so little research, education and support available. It’s just another way women’s issues have been silenced or minimized. So I’m very grateful to you for shining some light on the subject! Also, those cinnamon rice cakes sound so good – will have to try!

  • Melissa

    Happy Saturday! I try to do what I call mindful reading between my yoga and meditation practice so I’d also like to hear more about the Buddhist reading you do. Any favorite books?

    For folks interested in trying Diaspora Co (so good!) they sent out a discount code to share with new customers yesterday. HELLOSPICY will get you 10% off.

  • Amy

    Happy weekend Laura! I am excited about the earl grey cake recipe and signed up for both newsletters so I don’t miss yours as well! I am interested in attending the zoom and wondering how vegan friendly the new cookbook is. I’d also love to hear more about the Buddhist teachings you are reading as it is something I am more interested in learning and exploring as well. Hope you enjoy your smoothie and gardening and thanks for the great newsletter!

  • Jeannie

    Thank you for another fun Saturday Sun Laura, and for all your delicious recipes. The next one on my list to try is the Extra Veggie Vegan Gochujang Noodles – just picked up all the ingredients for it. I’ve been practicing Buddhism for a little over 21 years now and have found it to be very inspiring and helpful in my daily life with everything from relationships to difficult situations to anxiety & worry and more; I’ve also been a teacher at my centre for about 18 years now. This tradition has centres all over the world, where people can receive teachings of all levels, from beginner to advanced, and there happens to be a centre in St. Catharines. Here’s the link: – in case you’re interested and haven’t heard of it. I find it so helpful to hear the teachings in person, by teachers who share their own experience and give concrete daily life examples and applications.